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Welcome to Real Estate Friday! – theberkshireedge.com

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Here’s what we have for you this week in The Edge Real Estate section:

  • Property of the Week – Janet Kain of TKG Real Estate offers the opportunity to live in a stunning home, lovingly cared for and perfectly located for year-round enjoyment of the Berkshires.
  • Transformations – Designer Jennifer Owen and her clients imagined a calming space to relax while listening to the Boston Symphony Orchestra Live from Tanglewood on the radio!
  • Weekly real estate transactions for Berkshire County, Northern Litchfield County and, now, Columbia County
  • Market Perspective – Updated this week: The 2021 year-end real estate report from the Berkshire Board of REALTORS. What does it tell us?
  • The Self-Taught Gardener – How does Joan Didion’s approach to life and to her art inform our Self-Taught Gardener on how to garden?
  • Gardener’s Checklist – The holidays are over and the winter doldrums have set in. What’s a gardener to do to lift his spirits in these dark days?

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No trend detected in latest real estate data – Whitehorse Star

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For the first time in approximately a year, the average price of a house in Whitehorse has declined.

By Tim Giilck on May 25, 2022

For the first time in approximately a year, the average price of a house in Whitehorse has declined.

The real estate market has been on fire in recent months, with steadily-increasing prices.

In the last report from the Yukon Board of Statistics covering the last three months of 2021, the average house price in the city was $647,000. That represented an increase of $48,600, or 8.1 per cent from the fourth quarter of 2020.

The bureau released its latest report on Tuesday. It shows the average sale price of a single-detached house in Whitehorse was $637,300, lower than the end of 2021 but a rise of $46,700, or 7.9 per cent, from the first quarter of 2021.

In the first quarter of 2022, the total value of real estate transactions in Yukon was $81.4 million, with $70.8 million in Whitehorse and $10.6 million for the rest of Yukon.

It’s a decline of nearly $10,000 from the end-of-year report the bureau issued in March.

The average condo sale price in Whitehorse was $419,900, a decrease of $60,100, or 12.5 per cent, from the first quarter of 2021.

However, Marc Perrault, the president of the Yukon Real Estate Association, cautions people not to read too much into those numbers if they’re thinking the bubble has burst on the property market in the territory.

The first quarter of any year is usually the slowest for real estate sales, he told the Star today.

Coupled with concerns about inflation, Perrault said, he thought that was likely the reason for the dip in market values.

Perrault said he would have to see the trend continue for a year before he would become concerned about it.

The only thing that would change his mind would be other major signals of an economic slowdown, and that’s unlikely in the Yukon.

The market and economy here are very stable, he suggested, because it’s a government-based system which prevents most wild swings and
adjustments.

People are still immigrating into the territory to take advantage of its robust economy and growing public service, as well as other opportunities, Perrault said.

He doesn’t see that changing anytime soon.

“Demand is still greater than supply,” he noted.

The only category to show record-breaking growth was the mobile-home market. It hit a record high of $467,300.

A total of 54 single-detached houses were sold during the first quarter, an increase of 19 compared to the first quarter of 2021.

There were 49 condo sales, an increase of 27 compared to the first quarter of 2021.

The average condo price was $419,900, a decrease of $60,100, or 12.5 per cent, compared to the first quarter of 2021 ($479,900).

Four mobile homes were sold at an average price of $467,300.

Seven duplexes changed hands at an average price of $471,600.

Seven commercial properties were sold at a value totalling $6.9 million

In Whitehorse, a total of 130 real estate transactions was recorded in the first quarter of 2022, a rise of 46 compared to the first quarter of 2021. Over the previous five years, the first quarter average number of sales was 100.

Thirty homes sold in Whistle Bend during the period, with a total value of $18.5 million. It was the busiest neighbourhood in the city.

Copper Ridge saw eight properties sell at a total value of $5.3 million.

Porter Creek was the next-highest, with seven properties selling for $4.4 million.

The report showed that, excluding country residential properties, which typically sell for much higher prices than other single-detached houses, the average price in Whitehorse was $626,200 in the first quarter of 2022.

That compared to $632,100 in the fourth quarter of 2021 and $580,500 in the first quarter of 2021.

In Whitehorse, the median price of single-detached houses in the first quarter of 2022 was $620,500. That means the prices of half the houses sold were above this figure and the remaining half, below.

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B.C. Real Estate: Five homes for sale under $200000 – Vancouver Sun

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Trail, Port Hardy, Richmond and Tumbler Ridge among communities with homes in this price range

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According to a report released by a U.S.-based property management software company, around 10 per cent of all active home listings in Canada right now are priced at less than $200,000.

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There are no listings for less than $200,000 in the Lower Mainland (except in Richmond).

Here are five residential properties in B.C. that are for sale at less than $200,000.


Richmond 106/7240 Lindsay Road

The living room of a Richmond apartment priced at $199,000.
The living room of a Richmond apartment priced at $199,000. Photo by zealty.ca

This 630 square foot apartment is almost 50 years old and has a monthly maintenance fee of $460.

It is on the ground level and a key reason that it is priced at $199,000 is because it is built on leased land. The lease is prepaid until 2087.


Sonora Island Lot 30 Owen Bay

Sonora Island
Sonora Island Photo by Zealty.ca

This 1.26 acre lot comes with a small older cabin that is livable and is priced at $129,000. It has solar and wind power. There is a dock a ten-minute walk away.

Sonara Island is one of the Discovery Islands where Johnstone Strait joins the Georgia Strait.

The closest large community is Campbell River on Vancouver Island. Sonora Island is not serviced by B.C. Ferries.

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Port Hardy 7/7077 Highland Drive

An apartment in Port Hardy that is listed at $169,000.
An apartment in Port Hardy that is listed at $169,000. Photo by Zealty.ca

There are four apartments in different locations within Port Hardy on the top end of Vancouver that are priced at less than $200,000.

This one has two bedrooms and has been updated with new laminate floors and is south facing. It is priced at $169,000.

As a base for ferries to Prince Rupert, Port Hardy sees a lot of tourists in the summer.


Trail 2075 Topping Street

The view from a home in Trail, B.C., that is priced at $199,000.
The view from a home in Trail, B.C., that is priced at $199,000. Photo by Zealty.ca

Trail, the site of Teck Resources zinc and lead smelting and refining complex, was a decade ago a place you could buy a home for $50,000.

It’s now a place where you can get a detached home for less than $200,000. Despite the smelter that looms over the city, Trail is close to excellent skiing and recreation.

This 1,300 square-foot home has views of the Columbia River with a serviceable kitchen and even has a new washer-dryer. It is priced at $199,000.

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Tumbler Ridge 103 Ash Crescent

This home in Tumbler Ridge is for sale at $183,000 and has been on the market for two years.
This home in Tumbler Ridge is for sale at $183,000 and has been on the market for two years. Photo by Zealty.ca

Tumbler Ridge in the Peace River region was built from scratch in the early 1980s to create a community for coal mining companies in the area.

As a result, it’s a lovely town that’s well laid out and has great amenities. It is, however, beholden to coal demand, that has led to a slump in real estate prices.

With an asking price of $183,000, this 2,100 square foot home is on a large corner lot. It has three bedrooms and comes with a new furnace. It has been on the market for over two years.


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Quit judging people who bought houses at the peak of the real estate market and overpaid – The Globe and Mail

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A sale sign in Toronto in May, 2021. The national average resale house price peaked at $816,720 in February and has since come down to $746,146 in April.Christopher Katsarov/The Globe and Mail

The most positive financial development of 2022 so far is the end of the housing frenzy.

House prices went up too much, too fast. A lot of money has been made in real estate and a lot of economic activity generated, but we need a pullback to restore a degree of economic rationality.

Expect some ugliness as we make the transition from boom to whatever lies ahead for housing – stagnation, mild decline or bust. Canadians have so much invested in housing, both financially and emotionally. Seeing housing deflate will not bring out the good in people.

A prediction on the first to be judged: people who bought at the top of the market. Already, we have the phrase “buyer’s regret” making the rounds in media stories.

Stress Test podcast: Young Canadians on trying to buy in a wild real estate market

With rising interest rates, large mortgage payments are a new hurdle for homebuyers

The national average resale house price peaked at $816,720 in February and has since come down to $746,146 in April. Average prices last month were more than 50 per cent higher than the same time in 2020 and up 7.4 per cent over April, 2021. But housing has sprung a leak for sure. Economists say a price decline of as much as 10 per cent to 20 per cent is possible.

As recently as a month or two ago, we lived in a bid-till-you-bleed real estate market. Prices kept rising no matter how much people paid, so no deal was a bad deal if it got you into the market.

This was intergenerational thinking, not the whim of an inexperienced young generation trying to get into the housing market. Consider all the parental money that went into building down payments for first-time buyers. A CIBC Economics study last fall said almost 30 per cent of first-time buyers got down payment money from parents, and these gifts averaged $82,000 in value.

The home ownership imperative was also fuelled by the evolution of houses into a commodity to invest in, such as oil, metals or gold. In this financialization of housing, investment companies bought houses to rent out and new ventures emerged to allow people to buy fractional shares in houses and buildings.

Housing hardly needed a cheerleading section, but it had one in a real estate industry that was masterly in how it explained away the fundamental problem of house prices rising far ahead of incomes. Immigration justified prices. A lack of supply was the problem. The same goes for red tape holding up construction of new housing.

In Canada, every social cue tells young people to buy a house. Your parents don’t want you to miss out, your friends are buying and Instagramming their new lives and renters are maligned as patsies paying their landlord’s mortgage. In fact, renters pay a legitimate cost for shelter and save a bundle by not owning, money they can use to invest.

Excitement about housing used to be a Toronto and Vancouver thing. The mania later spread to places located within commuting distance of these urban centres and, in the COVID-19 pandemic, to far-flung communities that offered bigger houses for less money. A national consensus emerged: Housing was an unstoppable force. If you could afford to buy, you pushed until you scored a house.

Skeptical voices on housing spoke out along the way, some of them in the real estate business. But house prices steamrolled everyone and everything in their path, including a global pandemic. It sure looked like housing was an exception to the gravitational law of investing, which says everything that goes up in price must come down at some point.

Housing fought the law, and the law won. Now, what?

A few points for all to consider:

  • Rising interest rates make it more expensive to buy a house now compared with earlier this year, even as prices fall.
  • Immigration levels will help sustain demand for housing.
  • Labour shortages will restrain construction of new housing to satisfy this demand.
  • Staying five to 10 years in a house puts you in a position to see any near-term price declines turn into the next leg up for housing.
  • Buying a house you could afford at peak price levels was only a mistake if you planned to flip it.

House prices coming down is good for the country. It doesn’t have to be bad for recent buyers.

Are you a young Canadian with money on your mind? To set yourself up for success and steer clear of costly mistakes, listen to our award-winning Stress Test podcast.

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